Sunday, November 14, 2010

Gift Giving

Are you a practical or creative gift giver?

I'm mostly practical but sometimes I can get a little creative.  I like to give out the basics like clothing, gift certificates/cards, and toys for the kids.  But I also make various baskets and baked goods for gifts as well. 

For instance I like to make bedtime baskets for the smaller kiddies.  In the basket I put a pair of pajamas, a children's dvd,  bedtime bubble bath and lotion, a couple of toys & a few pieces of candy and other things like toothbrushes, puppet washcloths, bedroom slippers - that sort of thing.  I even put in some snowman soup for the little older kids who can handle drinking it.  Other baskets I've done were filled with lots of crafts, various games and treats - like making candies/chocolates.

I remember the first year I started doing baskets I gave a family member- who had just moved into their new place - a kitchen basket with pots, kitchen towels, pot holders, etc.  She was very excited when she opened to see what all was inside.  I used a large pot as the basket to hold everything. 

I've also done popcorn baskets, pampering baskets, sports baskets and pizza making baskets, to name a few. 

I start my gift list immediately after the holidays because I already have some ideas of what to get a person next Christmas. Everytime I get a gift idea, I right it down in my trusty notebook which I carry in my purse 365 days of the year.  Then transfer my notes to my holiday planner when I get home.

I like to think that I do very well when selecting gifts for people.  Many of the ideas come from knowing the person's interest and what they like.  For instance I have a few family members and friends (who are just like family) that are real sports fanatics.  One person in particular eats and breaths Washington Redskins.  I look for gifts that I know they don't have that is Redskins related.  This year I got them a set of car mats with the Redskins logo on them.  They are truly going to lose their mind when they open this gift.  This may even top the scarf.

Sometimes people will tell me what they want.   At a memorial Day cookout I attended this year one of my closets friends told me she would like more make-up as the ones I bought her a couple of years ago are almost gone.  This is what I found for her.

This set is really nice.  I wouldn't mind receiving this myself.  But I already have way too much make-up as it is and don't need any more.

Other ways I come up with gift ideas are by being observant and picking up on certain things through everyday conversations with people.  Like one day back in the spring my cousin, her 9 year old daughter and I were out shopping. I don't remember what store we were in but the daughter noticed a Hello kitty clock.  She really liked it but knew her mom wasn't going to buy it.  Her mother began telling me how the daughter loves and wants a Hello Kitty room.  Unbeknowns to them, I made a note in my little notebook that her favorite character was Hello Kitty and maybe I would get her the clock or something else. 

And remember the person who loves Redskins?  A couple of years ago I had an oversized scarf made for them.  They were watching a game on tv and saw a woman in the stands wearing a really nice Redskins scarf and they just could not stop talking about it.  Every so often they would bring it up so I thought it would be really nice if I could get one for them.  After doing a lot of searching on the internet, I found out someone on my job is a very great knitter and I had her make me one.  Plus the price couldn't be beat.

Sometimes if I'm not sure what to get the kids in my family, I ask their parents.  I always have my nieces and nephews write me a list.  Since I myself don't have kids, I never really know what kids are in to and I know their fascination about things change over the year.  What was popular in February is no longer popular in September.


Mandie said...

You are a great gift giver! Wow, what planning you do... You have given me some great ideas. Thank you for posting!

We seem to be practicle givers as well. I like the basket ideas you do. Great post!

Anonymous said...

I keep a notebook in my purse to write down ideas as well. You are a great gift giver.